You may have heard that your gut is like your second brain. The health and wellness of your gut play a significant role in the overall health of your entire body.
Many patients suffer from gut issues associated with poor diet and digestion. One of these conditions is irritable bowel syndrome, which affects many individuals suffering from poor health.
If you suspect you may have IBS, read on to learn more about it and its symptoms, what may be causing it, and how to treat it.
What Is Irritable Bowel Syndrome?
Irritable bowel syndrome is a condition where your intestines contract more or less often than they should. This is generally due to an imbalance of bacteria, infection, or viruses in your gut.
- Nutritional deficiencies
- Joint pain
- Skin problems
- Chronic constipation
All symptoms are highly unpleasant and can negatively impact your quality of life.
What Causes Irritable Bowel Syndrome?
Various factors negatively impact your gut health and contribute to symptoms of irritable bowel syndrome.
It’s no secret that the Standard American diet is unhealthy. Unfortunately, the Standard American Diet (SAD) is known as “standard” because it is common.
SAD is defined by its richness in fried foods and omega-6 fatty acids. Omega-6 fatty acids are a type of fat known as polyunsaturated fat, found in nuts, seeds, and vegetable oils.
In moderation, omega-6 fatty acids can be good for you and your heart. However, outside of moderation, omega-6 fatty acids can be inflammatory and stimulate an adverse reaction in your gut.
SAD is also high in processed foods and sugars, processed cheese and meats, and low in fiber-containing foods like fruits and vegetables.
Like an overload of omega-6 fatty acids, consumption of these foods outside of moderation can create inflammatory responses in the individual’s gut, which can irritate your gut and lead to IBS.
Low Stomach Acid
Low stomach acid in your gut can harm your gastrointestinal health by leading to an increase in overall intra-abdominal pressure. This increase leads to a burning sensation common in acid reflux patients.
Low stomach acid also interferes with your digestive process. The right amount of stomach acid is crucial for absorbing essential vitamins, minerals, nutrients, and proteins from ingested food into the body.
If you aren’t absorbing the necessary nutrients, you can become nutrient deficient.
Because stomach acid is also needed to kill harmful bacteria from ingested foods and neutralize enzymes, low stomach acid can leave you vulnerable to various diseases and health complications.
The causes of low stomach acid can be difficult to pinpoint. Stress is one contributing cause, although a poor diet is another primary cause.
Some other factors that can contribute to low stomach acid and negatively impact your gastrointestinal health include:
- Zinc deficiency
- High sugar intake
- Eating too quickly
- Prescription drugs
- Antacid medication
- Food allergies and sensitivities
- Chronic illness
If you suspect you may be suffering from low stomach acid and poor gut health, see a comprehensive provider who can help you improve your health while reducing stress on your body.
Stress can be responsible for low stomach acid, but it can also play a more significant role in the general denigration of your health.
Stress depletes your body’s ability to battle disease and infection. Stress can also influence your digestion and determine what nutrients your intestines absorb.
For some patients, stress can increase their fluid secretion and gut motility. This is why some patients experience diarrhea or urgent urination while going through a stressful event.
Depending on how your body responds to stress, stress can either delay emptying your stomach’s contents (resulting in constipation) or speed up the passing of materials through your intestines. For the latter, this can sometimes result in irritable bowel syndrome.
In general, your intestines maintain a tight barrier to help protect your body from most of the food-related bacteria you ingest. However, stress can make the walls of your intestines weaker, which causes changes in your overall digestive system.
Sometimes, diseases and infections in your body can attack your gut, practically destroying your gastrointestinal health. Usually, your immune system does what it can to battle these infections, but diseases can wreak havoc on your body if your immune system is weak.
Generally, you have a delicate balance of healthy and opportunistic bacteria living in your stomach. Some infections in the body can create an imbalance of the bacteria in your gut. When this balance is thrown off-kilter, the opportunistic bacteria can take over.
This can result in yeast, fungi, parasites, and other bacteria overgrowth. These problems attack your gut, which weakens your intestinal lining.
There are many comprehensive steps you can take to begin IBS treatment.
Some steps you can take on your own include decreasing your intakes of inflammatory food, such as processed foods, alcohol, foods high in fat and sugar, and foods that can trigger allergies like dairy and gluten.
In addition to eliminating foods from your diet, there are some foods you should try adding to your diet! In general, foods high in probiotics and prebiotics help promote the growth of healthy bacteria in your gut, which can prevent imbalances.
Some examples of foods that support IBS treatment include yogurt, kefir, bananas, berries, and kimchi.
If you suspect you may be dealing with irritable bowel syndrome, the easiest first step is to consult with medical professionals who can help guide and support you on your journey to health.
To learn more, contact Home Clinics of America for IBS treatment and gut health near Fort Worth, TX.